Blog Archive

Blog Archive

Oct 29, 2013 Know Greatness When You See It?
Do you really think so?

Sep 30, 2013 Decision Overload
Better big decision by timing big decisions

Aug 27, 2013 The Roi Of Follow-up
Making time to review earlier proposals is still your best investment

Jul 23, 2013 Can Do!
Save the stretch goals for AFTER the decision is made

Jul 2, 2013 Two Moves Ahead
Anticipating Your Competitors’ Response

Jun 11, 2013 Insatiable
Harnessing the power of curiosity

May 28, 2013 Don’t Try This At Home
The hidden profession of Decision Support

May 7, 2013 Traction
Launching & Sustaining A Strategic Skills Initiative

Apr 23, 2013 AWOL
Putting “Business” back in the “Business Case”

Apr 9, 2013 Lost In Translation
The power of rampant financial literacy.

Mar 26, 2013 Minority Report
The full picture includes the messy conflicts.

Mar 12, 2013 The Debunked Devil
Nothing, but NOTHING, replaces genuine dissent.

Feb 25, 2013 Show Me The Money
Separating fact from fiction in IT productivity projects

Feb 12, 2013 Kiss Follow-Up
Getting more by asking for less.

Jan 29, 2013 The Consensus Curse
None of us IS as dumb as all of us!

Jan 15, 2013 Fresh Eyes
And yet another reason why most acquisitions fail.

Jan 1, 2013 Unfiltered Truth In 2013
Luring quality information up from the front lines.

Dec 18, 2012 Bet The Barn – Not The Farm
Encouraging big risks at the local level for bigger wins.

Dec 4, 2012 The Power of a Question
Unlocking Innovation With Reframing

Nov 20, 2012 Hand-Offs
Pride of ownership skews evaluations and may demand drastic measures.

Nov 6, 2012 Getting What We Paid For
Experience comes at a high cost, but we usually fail to learn all we should.

Oct 23, 2012 CapEx Innovation
Even the mundane work of replacing old equipment is ripe for innovation.

Oct 9, 2012 Shoddy or Integrity?
Quality control needs to be embedded in business case processes.

Sep 25, 2012 Imagine “Scrappy”
Tight capital can demoralize and destroy… or energize and innovate.

Sept 11, 2012 Oh, Our Humanity!
The most dangerous bias is the bias denied.

Aug 28, 2012 Combo Follow-Up
Multiple projects obscuring results? Don’t give up on follow-up!

Aug 14, 2012 Doing The Right Things
Our fascination with efficiency still trumps our dedication to effectiveness.

Jul 31, 2012 Free Capacity!Check your customer mix before tapping your capital budget.

Jul 17, 2012 Letting Go
Over-valuing non-core assets ties up capital in the wrong places.

Jul 3, 2012 IT Gridlock
Competing, Confusing Priorities Destroy IT Performance.

Jun 19, 2012 Sabotaged By Conflicting Advice
Bad advice undermines the information decision-makers need.

Jun 5, 2012 The Mind of the Buyer: Identifying Divestiture Candidates
“There are more fools among buyers than among sellers.” – French Proverb

May 22, 2012 Messing With Success
Contrary to “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” tinker with successful teams.

May 8, 2012 Assessing Flexibility
Value, Risk… and Flexibility. A critical decision criteria in turbulent times.

Apr 24, 2012 Cards On The Table
The first step in conquering biases is identifying them.

Apr 10, 2012 No App For That
We ask the wrong questions, not calculate the wrong answers.

Mar 27, 2012 The Leasing Loophole
Most companies have looser requirements for leasing equipment than for purchasing equipment – and vendors exploit this loophole.

Mar 13, 2012 Now There’s A Name For It
Grading our own decision process skills is worthless when we’re unfamiliar with the standards.

Feb 28, 2012 A Decision Is Not An Event
Being a good decision-maker does NOT mean good decisions are being made.

Feb 14, 2012 Slackers Lurking
Lousy ideas sneak through approval processes by hiding in the folds of great ideas.

Jan 31, 2012 Straight From The Horse’s Mouth
What do you really want: great analysis or your first impressions repeated back to you?

Jan 17, 2012 Sticking To The Plan
With today’s staffs running lean, the discipline of preempting distractions pays dividends.

Jan 3, 2012 Building a Better 2012
The window of opportunity to make positive changes in strategic decision processes is narrowing.

Dec 19, 2011 The Dark Side Of Goal Seek
Withholding information from your experts can actually improve their objectivity and accuracy.

Dec 5, 2011 Precious Memories
What if you learned that most of your capital projects are performing 20 percent lower than reported?

Nov 21, 2011 When Brains Are Not Enough
Even high intelligence and experience do not instinctively produce the BEST solutions.

Nov 7, 2011 IT = R + D
It’s time to approach information technology decisions for what they are… research & development.

Oct 24, 2011 Tripped-Up
When project teams put their “best foot forward”, perceptions are distorted.

Oct 10, 2011 Making The Grade
How can an organization produce solid evidence of “Effective Management and Governance” to rating agencies and bankers?

Sep 26, 2011 Battling The Blob II
Side questions and musing from top executives trigger untold wasted effort by project teams.

Sep 12, 2011 Battling The Blob
Left to natural evolution, new processes can balloon to unmanageable and ridiculous proportions.

Aug 29, 2011 Of Checklists And Templates
Checklists are typically detested, but they can also create an unhealthy, unhelpful plug & play mindset.

Aug 15, 2011 United We Fall
Perfect harmony is great for a choir, but should raise some doubts when wrestling with a difficult problem. A healthy culture encourages healthy dissent for great understanding and creativity.

Aug 1, 2011 The Delay That Pays
When’s the right time to calculate returns? At the very end… and not before!

Jul 18, 2011 Monte Carlo Traps
Monte Carlo Simulation: Elegant, powerful, and (too often) dangerously misleading.

Jul 4, 2011 What Happens In Vegas…
Project proposals often rely on risk estimates in their valuations. Just how reliable are these estimates?

Jun 20, 2011 Members Only
Vendors can provide valuable contributions to our capital projects – but only when we are ready for them.

Jun 6, 2011 Mind The Gaps
When called upon to review and approve a proposal, leaders need the tools for spotting gaps and missteps in the business case.

May 23, 2011 The Mummy’s Curse
Some folks just don’t take ‘No’ for an answer… and that’s not always a virtue.

May 9, 2011 Value From… Where?

Financial engineering doesn’t create value or make a dubious project a winner. When the spreadsheets describe a boost in value, check for new risks hiding below the surface.

Apr 25, 2011 Failing With Success
Skipping follow-up just because a project went well stacks the odds against us for the future.

APR 11, 2011 Time Savers… Really!
Smart decision disciplines & reliable processes are not anchors slowing us down but plow the road to speed things up.

Mar 28, 2011 The “S” Word
Confronting claims of “strategic” value when the hard numbers weren’t enough

Mar 21, 2011 Saying “No” To Great Ideas
The most successful companies know who they are …and who they are not

This article was originally published in the Washington Technology Industry Association March 2011 Newsletter

Mar 14, 2011 In Praise of Doubt
We want to see confidence – but we first need to see candor.

Mar 7, 2011 A Rose By Any Other Name…
If a leader truly wants vibrant debate and healthy dissention, they must withhold their own opinions.

Feb 28, 2011 The Leasing Illusion
Changes loom menacingly in the land of lease accounting. Be afraid… or not. They might inadvertently protect companies from approving bad projects.

Feb 21, 2011 A Tip From Warren Buffett
The vast majority of acquisitions fail because no one really wants to stop the deal. The Confirmation Bias at work and Warren Buffet’s advice.

Feb 14, 2011 When Is An IT Project Not An IT Project?
Beware of project labels – they can set a project on an irreversible course to the wrong answer. This article was originally published in the Washington Technology Industry Association February 20011 Newsletter

Feb 7, 2011 The Perfect Crime
Leaders can make great decisions only when they have the right choices in front of them. When a team skips proven brainstorming steps, even a loser solution can seem like a ‘no-brainer.’

Jan 31, 2011 Budget Traps
The annual capital budgeting process, while a critical planning tool, can encourage second-rate investment proposals and lackluster ROI.

Jan 24, 2011 The Sheep In Wolf’s Clothing
The Devil’s Advocate is a centuries old technique for improving group decisions, elegant in its simplicity, widely used… and doesn’t work.

Jan 17, 2011 Investing In Follow-Up
Making time to review earlier proposals and decisions is hard… very hard. But it’s still one of the best time investments a leader can make.

Jan 10, 2011 The Wrong Measuring Sticks
Employee performance metrics can seriously undermine a project team’s objectivity. Know how team members are evaluated and rewarded in their daily responsibilities and how to respond when those measures are misleading.

Jan 3, 2011 Double Your Money In 7 Days Or Less!
Powerful pressures lure the most sincere project teams into over-valuing the projects they have been working on a long time. A simple question can alert leaders the numbers are unreliable.

Dec 27, 2010 Low Capital? Redefine Success
Project teams preparing capital proposals often develop a misguided vision of success in their minds, and that is very, very expensive. A version of this article was published in the Washington Technology Industry Association January 2011 Newsletter.

Dec 27, 2010 Hello World!
Great News: You have more capital than you think!